Robert  Karanja

Robert Karanja is the co-founder of Villgro Kenya, an incubator and impact investor supporting emerging healthcare businesses in Africa. 

Dr. Karanja is an accomplished professional boasting over 20 years of experience in the fields of academia, technological innovation, Research and development (R&D), and development entrepreneurship in global health across East Africa.

Dr. Karanja started his career as a volunteer at the  International Centre for Insect and Ecology (ICIPE).

He would later move on to the  Kenya Medical Research Institute (KEMRI). During his time at the government agency, he played a role in developing global Research and development proposals.

He also published 30+ peer-reviewed research papers on biomedical research and global health development. 

Following his KEMRI success, he held a stint as the Academic Director of the Bio-entrepreneurship at Strathmore Business School.

After amassing enough experience Dr. Karaja co-founded Villgro Africa alongside Wilfred Njagi, the company’s current CEO.

Between 2015 and 2020, Dr. Karanja was the CEO at Villgro. During this period he fostered donor relationships that helped grow the company’s annual budget sixfold.

Since its establishment, Villgro has pumped over $1 million into health and bioscience startups across East Africa.

In this window, the company has created more than 200 jobs and attracted more than $18 million in Foreign Direct Investment (FDI).